MTV’s Teen Wolf continues to impress me! Each season goes deeper and deeper into the mythology of wolves and reveals layers to the characters and what can happen in the seemingly sleepy town Beacon Hills.
I was lucky enough to sit down with the cast and creator at this year’s Comic-Con and learned quite a few things about the cast, and current and upcoming seasons.
The LGBT Community Loves Teen Wolf
I was sitting at a table with The Advocate writers, so the questions all tended to veer in this direction. It was actually really refreshing to get a larger sense on the show’s impact, rather than the fangirl bubble that often exists for shows like this and on the CW. So for every cast member, they were asked about how it feels to work on a show that is basically an LGBT utopia – characters are gay or lesbian and it’s not a big deal. There’s no real “coming out” after school special, they’re just homosexual and it’s not a big deal. There’s no homophobia in Beacon Hills. Dylan O’Brien (Stiles) said that he’s really grateful that the show makes time for that and sets a good example. He and Shelley Henning (Malia) both loved that it’s just a part of the show – that’s how it should be in real.
Tyler Posey (Scott) loved that the show has a lot of diversity in general and that it’s all done in such a natural way – nothing feels forced or out of place.
Show creator Jeff Davis said, “We didn’t want to introduce [the newest gay character, Liam’s friend] as a gay kid, you need to seem him as a friend first.” The characters that are gay are rarely solely defined by that, they are fully fleshed out characters in their own right.
Stiles and Malia Are Heading Towards Trouble
I may be in the minority here, but I am digging the new relationship between Stiles and Malia. Dylan and Shelley obviously are as well, and one of the things they love about them is that they have their own way of showing affection. So far, everythings been natural and smooth for them, but there will be a bump in the road coming this season. Dylan insisted that it’ll be cute, but I bet fangirls will disagree and hope for far more troubles ahead.
Scott and Stiles Have Tough Decisions Ahead
One of the biggest elephants in the room this season is that everyone knows about Malia’s relationship to Peter except for Malia. We’ll learn more about their connection later in the season, but it’ll be up to Scott and Stiles to decie if they want to tell her the truth. Dylan said, “They’re unsure of what to do because Malaia wants to get to know her dad, but that could be really bad…”
Is Malia a Role Model?
Shelley Henning’s Malia is a very strong female character – she doesn’t sit around and wait for Stiles or Scott to save the day. If she thinks she can find out important info, she’ll chase after it regardless of how safe it is. Does she feel any pressure to be a role model as a strong female character? She stated, “It’s seamless and seems normal to me which is ironic since I usually play the damsel-in-distress.” While Malia isn’t the damsel, sometimes Stiles is and both Dylan and Shelley loved that about their dynamic.
Jeff Davis Always Wanted To Work on Cable
While many showrunners dream of network TV, Jeff had different aspirations. He went in to cable because he liekd the lower amount of episodes – you have more time to do resoots and pickups and just plan overall. Doing 24 episodes in Season 3 was really hard, with only a few weeks between the end of one part and the beginning of the other. So while he loves MTV and the new seasons, he’s not eager to go back to that many episodes. The 20 episode order for Season 5 is definitely more his speed.
They Mind-Map The Mythology
While some writers’ rooms have bibles or master walls, Teen Wolf uses a computer program called mindmapping. Everything is in there with each episode, each assassin, each main character having it’s own mind-map to show the relationships and history to keep all the writers on the same page. This helps the writers keep track of the ever-growing mythology.
Maybe They Should Hire a Fan?
Speaking of the mindmap, Jeff Davis mentioned that since the mythology is very complex it might be helpful to hire a superfan to help proof future seasons. He brought up the famous example of Stephen King hiring a mega-fan to go over his sequel to The Shining. Only those truly obsessed with the show would be able to keep track of every detail.
And don’t forget to check out the mid-season trailer that debuted at the panel:
Tyler Hoechlin and JR Bourne